"You therefore must endure hardship as a good soldier of Christ" 2Timothy2:3
Timothy had just been anointed to preach the gospel, but he was young. and one of his grandparent was a gentile. He had a long road ahead of him. Even in the next chapter of that letter, Paul warns of perilous times. He previous told Timothy to endure hardship as a good soldier. Preaching what would not be easy and he would have to fight the good fight of faith. The same applies to us believers of Christ.
Many of us aren't called to preach but we are called to advance the kingdom of God one way of another, and just as it wasn't easy for Timothy, Life would not be easy for us.
The word hardship is like the word friendship or relationship or citizenship. You can't have a friendship without friends nor can you have citizenship if you are not a citizen of some place. You have hardship when life is hard. In the NLT, suffering replaces hardship. I don't think God makes life hard for us.
When we go into battle (the reference to soldiers), our enemy will make life hard for us. He will throw whatever we can to stop us from advancing the kingdom. Paul instructed Timothy and us to "fight the good fight of faith."(1 Timothy 6:12)
Enduring hardship basically mean to suffer evil or trouble. If you look up the two words, they are one: Kakeopathos. Their concordance number is 2553. God is not the author of evil, but because there is sin in the world, evil prevails. The good news is God is fighting our battle. Paul wrote to the Ephesians that we just need the armor of God on and stand.
Author of the Second Chance Series and owner of Unique Pen Press.